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Lorene Edson

United Kingdom

Member since December 12, 2013

  • Westward_group_renewable_energy_news_paris_about_eco_stuff_expensiveness_and_green_energy_savings_177_

    Everyone thinks eco stuff is expensive – but green energy could save us $71 trillion by 2050

    Yes: we’ll have to invest a lot but in the long term this could save the planet as well as huge sums of money, according to the IEA.

    According to the International Energy Agency if the world replaced fossil fuels with renewables as its primary source of energy by 2050 the global economy will have saved US$ 71 trillion.

    The IEA’s soberly named biennial report Energy Technology Perspectives 2014 casts a look at the energy sector over the next 40 years.

    While these are the long term net gains, there are also some seriously costly investments needed to spur these changes.

    The IEA estimates that an additional US$44 trillion of investment will be needed to meet 2050 carbon reduction targets.

    This represents an increase of 22% from the figure the Agency gave two years ago ($36 trillion).

    The investments would guarantee that the average temperature rise since the industrial revolution is limited to 2-degrees Celsius.

    According to the Agency investments in renewables, nuclear power and carbon capture and storage would – in the long term – yield more than $115 trillion in fuel savings.

    According to Maria van der Hoeven - executive director of the Paris-based IEA – coal use if still growing and outpacing that of renewable energies, while the intensity of electricity emissions has remained stable for the past two decades, though there has been some progress in certain areas.

  • Img_1117_177_

    The Tokyo Cement Group recently opened its second Biomass power plant to supply the largely rural region of Mahiyanganaya with 5MW of energy.

    This Rs. 2.4 billion plant by Tokyo Power, the energy arm of the nation’s leading cement and concrete manufacturer, Tokyo Cement Group, is an initiative to build on its expertise in sustainable biomass power. “Tokyo Power launched the Mahiyanganaya plant after successfully pioneering the first plant of its kind in Sri Lanka that provides 10MW of clean energy to their factory in Trincomalee,” according to a company statement.

    This 5MW Dendro power plant is expected to contribute approximately 40 million kWh annually to the national grid using sustainable green energy sources, notably Gliricidia, a fast growing tree legume, which is available in abundance in the country’s dry zone. The fuel-wood is obtained from plantations of Gliricidia sepium, or from farmers in the region who grow these trees through Tokyo Cement’s out-grower agricultural programmes.

    The expected generation capacity of 40 million kWh per year or 3.33 million kWh per month should enable the supply of electricity to reach an additional 30,000 rural households, thereby allowing the farmers that grow and supply Gliricidia, to directly benefit from their involvement in supplying biomass for the community’s energy consumption, the company said.

    “Our success with our initial Biomass plant in Trincomalee, gives us confidence that this plant will not only supply...

  • Nuclearjapan_177_


    The government of Japan finally came to the conclusion that the same nuclear energy that played a powerful role in modernization, is once more to be part of the energy policy of this nation. Prime Minister Abe is focused on rejuvenating the economy therefore a pragmatic energy policy is needed. Abe therefore made it clear that nuclear pragmatism is required based on the negative side effects of using dirty energy alongside having extremely limited natural resources. Not surprisingly, the utilization of the nuclear sector is a way out of the current stalemate within the body politic of Japan.

    Irrespective of anti-nuclear media outlets in Japan, green environmentalists espousing doom, the blatant manipulation of facts about the stance of the majority of Japanese nationals by the international media and other areas related to negativity, it is clear that nuclear favored political parties and politicians have been re-elected locally and centrally. Indeed, anti-nuclear candidates and the main opposition party have been beaten time after time collectively in relation to national politics and local government on the whole. This doesn’t imply that the majority of Japanese nationals are pro-nuclear but it does show that other concerns are deemed to be more important.

    This isn’t to downplay anti-nuclear feelings within Japan but the reality is that more people will go shopping in trendy Shinjuku, Harajuku and Ikebukuro on an average day, than the numbers that usually turn u...

  • Scottwiater-133x200_132_

    The latest monitors can help homeowners track their energy consumption in greater detail than before. It’s the middle of a steaming hot summer afternoon. You’re at home, blasting the air conditioner, washing your clothes, and standing in front of the open freezer while the TV plays in the background.

    You may not realize it, but you’re racking up kilowatts, increasing your utility bill, and adding to Earth’s pollutants.

    In the past, consumers didn’t have the resources or education to know how to use energy efficiently. But thanks to big data, they now can reduce costs and help save the planet, all with the click of a button.

    Analyzing Energy Usage Home and commercial monitors are showing customers just how much energy they’re using at any time of the day.

    Efergy, a power tracking company, sells monitors and hardware that connect to fuse boxes via a wireless signal. Users can see the energy usage on the monitor or their computer screens through a platform created by the company. The devices show customers the past 255 days’ worth of hourly energy consumption, usage trends and how those translate into dollars and cents.

    “It makes you realize when you’re using too much electricity and see how you can reduce,” says Juan Gonzalez, president of Efergy USA.

    Efergy’s system sends out an audio alert to let customers know when they’re reaching their maximum consumption target. That helps them save on their energy bills while preventing the electricity grid from...

  • 20140301_wbp003_0_132_

    EUROPEAN climate policy has spent vast amounts of public money, sent power utilities to the brink and done little to reduce emissions of carbon dioxide, an impressive display of multi-pronged incompetence. But might all that money at least have built a robust, world-beating European renewables industry?

    Not yet. European makers of solar panels have been largely wiped out by a combination of the financial crisis and competition from cheaper Chinese rivals. Q-Cells of Germany, once the world’s largest solar manufacturer, went bust in 2012. SolarWorld, Germany’s largest remaining maker, begged successfully for investors’ patience to avoid bankruptcy late last year. The EU, like America, is bringing anti-dumping complaints against Chinese firms, but even if these were to succeed it is clear that the future of solar-panel manufacturing lies beyond Europe.

    Besides barely-green biomass, geographically limited hydropower and unproven tidal power, that leaves wind turbines as the best hope for European green energy. The picture is brighter than for solar. But Prokon, a German wind-park developer that offered generous profit-shares to small investors, filed for bankruptcy in January. And Europe’s makers of wind turbines have gone through a dark few years, shedding jobs and racking up losses.

    Vestas, of Denmark, was once the pin-up of the wind-turbine industry. But it overinvested just as others piled into the market. As its balance-sheet deteriorated, investors took fright, ...

  • 10-alt-energy-1_177_

    At Delft University of Technology in the Netherlands, researchers are working on a novel, albeit somewhat distasteful, alternative to fossil fuels. They've developed a state-of-the-art toilet for use in developing countries that employs microwaves to chemically alter human waste into syngas, a mixture of carbon monoxide and hydrogen. This syngas can then be used in stacks of fuel cells to generate electricity. Hypothetically, one toilet could generate enough juice to power several village households, freeing them from dependence on coal or oil.

    At first glance, Delft's scheme to turn poop into power may seem a bit daft. But drastic times call for drastic measures, and many people categorize the state of our environment as drastic. We live on a planet of finite resources -- some of which are crucial to our survival, and others that harm the environment every time we use them.

    Rather than wait for the oil wells to run dry and coastal cities to disappear beneath rising sea levels, many people are looking ahead to cleaner alternative sources of energy. Some of these energy sources, like solar power, hybrid-electric vehicles and small, hand-powered gadgets have already caught on. Others, however, like feces-fueled water heaters, may take a little getting used to.

    Here, for your reading enjoyment, are 10 of the wackier ideas for alternative energy. Some of them are already available; others need a few more trial runs before they hit the market. Either way, if you're reading this...

  • 01_177_

    They were two winningly sustainable houses, designed at Harvard to use little or no energy.

    A presentation at the Harvard Graduate School of Design (GSD) celebrated this pair of prize-winning student designs: one in France (wholly a computer simulation, created in pixels) and the other in Japan (wholly real, made of native timber).

    The setting was “Innovate,” a periodic series of noontime presentations, this one moderated last Thursday by Inaki Abalos, who chairs GSD’s Department of Architecture.

    Zero-House was the simulation, created on a computer in stages, from design, to analysis, to redesign, to re-analysis, until it had theoretically met the challenge to transform a commonplace two-story suburban house in eastern France so that it created more electricity than it used, becoming what experts call a “surplus-energy house.”

    “One small step was made at a time, and then evaluated,” read the student briefing paper on Zero-House, which noted the “swift, but accurate, feedback” that computer simulation afforded.

    The student team of Apoorv Goyal, Keojin Jin, Saurabh Shrestha, and Arta Yazdanseta are master of design studies (M.Des.) students set to graduate in May. They worked with adviser Holly Samuelson, D.Des. ’13, an assistant professor of architecture at GSD who, among other things, studies the energy performance of buildings. Assisting her was D.Des.S. candidate Diego Ibarra.

    The biennial competition they won, sponsored by the International Buildi...

  • Oil_hike_177_

    NEW YORK, March 3 (Reuters) - Russia's intervention in Ukraine drove up crude oil and prices for gold and government debt on Monday as the heightened tensions spurred investors to seek safe havens and sell any exposure to the region.

    Crude prices rose more than $2 a barrel, gold futures jumped 2 percent and prices of top-rated euro zone government bonds surged. The aversion to risk took a steep toll on stock markets, with the Moscow bourse slumping 11 percent, wiping nearly $60 billion of value off Russian companies.

    Stocks across Europe and on Wall Street also took a beating.

    Market volatility indexes, a sign of investor apprehension, surged, with the Euro STOXX Volatility Index spiking 30.4 percent in its biggest one-day gain since 2011. The U.S. CBOE volatility index surged 20 percent at one point, and ended the session 14.5 percent higher.

    "Investors had underestimated the risks of an escalation in Ukraine, so the events over the weekend are a wake-up call for the market," said David Thebault, head of quantitative sales trading at Global Equities in Paris.

    President Vladimir Putin's forces tightened their grip on the Crimea region of Ukraine, sparking the stock plunge in Moscow and forcing Russia's central bank to spend $10 billion of reserves to prop up the ruble.

    Ukraine said Russia was massing armored vehicles on its side of a narrow stretch of water closest to Crimea after Putin declared over the weekend that he had the right to invade his neighbor to ...